Stevenson's medical breakthrough for COVID-19

Duncan Stevenson, engineered a medical breakthrough for COVID-19 from his garage.
Duncan Stevenson, engineered a medical breakthrough for COVID-19 from his garage.
Image: Beautiful News.

Duncan Stevenson feared for his loved ones when he heard the COVID-19 infection rates.

In hospitals, patients require ventilators that are not only in shortage, but are sometimes overly complex for doctors to navigate.

So Stevenson decided to step in and utilise his engineering skills in the battle against the virus. “You can’t wait for the world to save you,” he says. “Sometimes you’ve got to take a deep breath and do it yourself.”

Stevenson tinkered with creating a ventilator that is both affordable and intuitive. After several trials in his home garage in South Africa, he finally devised a user-friendly ventilator he could share with the world.

But he needed support. After a few months searching online, Stevenson found a group of dedicated doctors, scientists, and paramedics.

Through their corporation FluidIQ, his novel instrument was further developed.

Stevenson and his team have since built a life-saving tool – the HOPE inVent. This pragmatic ventilator was inspired by the Army Emergency Respirator.

Originally created in the 1950s, it required no electronics and provided treatment for respiratory issues.


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Today, Stevenson’s new and improved invention is a 3D-printable product and the smallest single-patient ventilator.

It’s cost-efficient and can be readily deployed, giving it the potential to safeguard lives worldwide.

“What stemmed from a desire to protect my family may just be the tool that can save millions,” Stevenson says. With his innovation and the unwavering hard work of the group, patients will be able to breathe easy again.

Since the Covid-19 pandemic first hit South African shores in March 2020, frontline workers have worked tirelessly and at great personal risk. Stories of sacrifice and loss, both personal and professional, are plenty on the country's frontline. While infection numbers drop and the arrival of vaccines brings renewed hope, these workers have seen this trend before. They're gearing up for an inevitable third wave. From ambulance, to hospital, to graveyard - MultimediaLIVE takes you to the frontline of SA's fight against Covid-19.

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